University of Michigan Law School
Civil Rights Litigation Clearinghouse
new search
view search results
page permalink
Case Name Anderson v. Kern County JC-CA-0068
Docket / Court 1:90-cv-00205-GEB-JFM ( E.D. Cal. )
State/Territory California
Case Type(s) Jail Conditions
Special Collection California Jail Population Caps
Attorney Organization Hadsell, Stormer & Renick
Prisoners Rights Union
Case Summary
Because this case predates PACER, the Clearinghouse has limited information on what occurred.

On April 9, 1990, prisoners in the Kern County jail filed a complaint in the Eastern District of California against the county. The plaintiffs, represented by private firms and the Prisoner ... read more >
Because this case predates PACER, the Clearinghouse has limited information on what occurred.

On April 9, 1990, prisoners in the Kern County jail filed a complaint in the Eastern District of California against the county. The plaintiffs, represented by private firms and the Prisoner Rights Union, filed the complaint under 42 U.S.C. § 1983 based on violations of plaintiffs' rights under the First, Fourth, Eighth, and Fourteenth Amendments. The complaint revolved around allegedly inadequate conditions in the jail. The plaintiffs claimed that overcrowding led to issues of inedible food, insufficient numbers of beds for prisoners, inadequate medical and mental health care, and other poor living conditions. The plaintiffs sought injunctive relief and attorney’s fees from the county. The case was assigned to Chief Judge Robert E. Coyle.

On June 5, 1990, the plaintiffs filed a motion for preliminary injunction and a motion for class certification. The Clearinghouse does not have access to these motions so we do not know precisely what was sought.

On June 27, 1990, the action was referred to Magistrate Judge John F. Moulds.

On October 2, 1990, Chief Judge Robert E. Coyle granted the motion for preliminary injunction. The order required that the defendant maintain a cap on their prison population, provide all prisoners with beds, give certain prisoners access to day rooms, and make other changes to their processing procedures. This preliminary injunction was modified before trial, but the Clearinghouse does not have access to the documents that explain those modifications.

On March 21, 1991, Chief Judge Coyle granted the plaintiffs’ motion for class certification. The class was certified as all present and future Kern County jail inmates, starting April 9, 1990.

A jury trial ensued from May 1991 to June 1991. The available documents do not indicate the precise outcome of this trial.

On March 20, 1992, the case was reassigned to Judge Garland E. Burrell. And on October 8, 1992, Judge Burrell ordered a permanent injunction based on the reports and recommendations of Magistrate Judge Moulds. This injunction ordered defendants to give all prisoners better access to the law library, place a cap on inmate populations, have more staff on duty, have translators on staff when inmates who request them were seeking medical or mental health services, allow certain inmates in administrative segregation better access to exercise equipment, and ensure all the prisoners get beds. However, the district court refused to order the defendants to stop using padded safety cells for suicidal inmates.

In late November 1992, the defendant and plaintiffs filed cross-appeals to the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals. The plaintiffs appealed the court’s refusal to bar the use of safety cells. The defendants appealed the district court’s order for the exercise policy to be changed and for the prison to provide non-inmate translators.

While the permament injunction appeals were pending, on September 27, 1993, Magistrate Judge Moulds granted in part and denied in part the defendant’s motion for sanctions, which the plaintiffs appealed.

On January 28, 1994, Judge Garland Burrell, adopting in full the report and recommendations from Magistrate Judge Moulds, awarded plaintiffs attorney’s fees totaling $381,871.08. The defendants appealed this order to the 9th circuit.

On May 17, 1994, the 9th circuit held that, due to a jurisdictional defect, it could not hear the plaintiffs' appeal of the order for sanctions. We don’t have access to know what the jurisdictional defect was. The 9th circuit transferred the appeal back to the district court for further action.

On January 13, 1995, the 9th Circuit (Circuit Judges Cecil F. Poole, William C. Canby Jr., and Pamela Ann Rymer) affirmed the district court’s permanent injunction decision in part and reversed the decision in part. See 45 F.3d 1310 (1995). The appeals court affirmed the district court’s holding to refuse to enjoin the County from using safety cells, holding that temporary placement in safety cells was sometimes needed to deprive the prisoners of all means of harming themselves. The appeals court also affirmed the district court’s order to provide translators for prisoners during medical and mental health interviews, contending that this order was consistent with the jail’s existing policy. The appeals court reversed the decision of the district court with regard to the County’s policy on exercise access for prisoners housed in administrative segregation. The appeals court held that confinement and lack of exercise for these prisoners did not rise to the level of deliberate indifference.

On May 22, 1995, the 9th Circuit granted the defendant’s motion to vacate and remand the order for attorney’s fees made in January 1994. The proceeding was remanded back to the district court for further action.

On July 7, 1995, the 9th Circuit (Circuit Judges Poole, Canby, and Rymer) denied the plaintiffs-appellants-cross appellees' petition for rehearing and rejected the suggestion for rehearing en banc. See 75 F.3d 448, 449 (9th Cir. 1995).

After litigating over attorney’s fees for over a year, on September 30, 1996, Judge Burrell, based on the report and recommendations of Magistrate Judge Moulds, awarded the plaintiffs attorneys’ fees in the amount of $380,451.08.

The defendant appealed this order awarding attorney’s fees on October 21, 1996. The plaintiff filed a cross-appeal on November 4, 1996. But on April 2, 1997, the parties stipulated to dismissal with prejudice. The case was dismissed with prejudice on February 9, 1998. The Clearinghouse does not have access to the details of the voluntary dismissal.

The case is now closed.

- 07/03/2012
Sarah Reasoner - 02/21/2019
Aaron Gurley - 10/24/2019


compress summary

- click to show/hide ALL -
Issues and Causes of Action
click to show/hide detail
Issues
Constitutional Clause
Cruel and Unusual Punishment
Due Process
Content of Injunction
Hire
Preliminary relief granted
Recordkeeping
Crowding
Crowding / caseload
Pre-PLRA Population Cap
Defendant-type
Corrections
General
Administrative segregation
Conditions of confinement
Disciplinary procedures
Disciplinary segregation
Food service / nutrition / hydration
Restraints : physical
Suicide prevention
Medical/Mental Health
Medical care, general
Mental health care, general
Self-injurious behaviors
Suicide prevention
Plaintiff Type
Private Plaintiff
Type of Facility
Government-run
Causes of Action 42 U.S.C. § 1983
Defendant(s) County of Kern
Plaintiff Description Prisoners in Kern County jail.
Indexed Lawyer Organizations Hadsell, Stormer & Renick
Prisoners Rights Union
Class action status sought Yes
Class action status granted Yes
Filed Pro Se No
Prevailing Party Plaintiff
Public Int. Lawyer Yes
Nature of Relief Preliminary injunction / Temp. restraining order
Attorneys fees
Injunction / Injunctive-like Settlement
Source of Relief Litigation
Settlement
Form of Settlement Voluntary Dismissal
Order Duration 1990 - n/a
Filing Year 1990
Case Closing Year 1998
Case Ongoing No
Additional Resources
click to show/hide detail
  See this case at CourtListener.com (May provide additional documents and, for active cases, real-time alerts)
Docket(s)
1:90-cv-00205-GEB -JFM (E.D. Cal.)
JC-CA-0068-9000.pdf | Detail
Date: 02/09/1998
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
General Documents
First Amended Complaint for Declaratory and Injunctive Relief
JC-CA-0068-0002.pdf | Detail
Date: 08/01/1990
Source: District Court
Order (E.D. Cal.)
JC-CA-0068-0003.pdf | Detail
Date: 09/28/1990
Source: District Court
Order (E.D. Cal.)
JC-CA-0068-0004.pdf | Detail
Date: 03/22/1991
Source: District Court
Order (E.D. Cal.)
JC-CA-0068-0005.pdf | Detail
Date: 03/25/1991
Source: District Court
Order (E.D. Cal.)
JC-CA-0068-0006.pdf | Detail
Date: 03/27/1991
Source: District Court
Findings and Recommendations (E.D. Cal.)
JC-CA-0068-0007.pdf | Detail
Date: 11/02/1991
Source: District Court
Order and Permanent Injunction (E.D. Cal.)
JC-CA-0068-0008.pdf | Detail
Date: 10/08/1992
Source: District Court
Judgment in a Civil Case (E.D. Cal.)
JC-CA-0068-0009.pdf | Detail
Date: 10/26/1992
Source: District Court
Stipulation and Order (E.D. Cal.)
JC-CA-0068-0010.pdf | Detail
Date: 11/09/1992
Source: District Court
[Ninth Circuit] Opinion [Affirming in Part and Reversing in Part] (45 F.3d 1310)
JC-CA-0068-0001.pdf | WESTLAW| LEXIS | Detail
Date: 01/13/1995
show all people docs
Judges Burrell, Garland Ellis Jr. (E.D. Cal.) show/hide docs
JC-CA-0068-0008 | JC-CA-0068-0010 | JC-CA-0068-9000
Coyle, Robert Everett (E.D. Cal.) show/hide docs
JC-CA-0068-0003 | JC-CA-0068-0004 | JC-CA-0068-0005 | JC-CA-0068-0006
Moulds, John F. (E.D. Cal.) [Magistrate] show/hide docs
JC-CA-0068-0003 | JC-CA-0068-0006 | JC-CA-0068-0007 | JC-CA-0068-9000
Poole, Cecil F. (N.D. Cal., Ninth Circuit) show/hide docs
JC-CA-0068-0001
Plaintiff's Lawyers Berry, Gina S. (California) show/hide docs
JC-CA-0068-9000
Comiskey, Paul Wayne (California) show/hide docs
JC-CA-0068-0002 | JC-CA-0068-0010 | JC-CA-0068-9000
Derevan, Richard (California) show/hide docs
JC-CA-0068-0010 | JC-CA-0068-9000
Fabricant, Deborah (California) show/hide docs
JC-CA-0068-0010 | JC-CA-0068-9000
Herman, Richard P. (California) show/hide docs
JC-CA-0068-0002 | JC-CA-0068-0010 | JC-CA-0068-9000
Persons, Paul Turner (California) show/hide docs
JC-CA-0068-0002 | JC-CA-0068-0010 | JC-CA-0068-9000
Rosen, Sanford Jay (California) show/hide docs
JC-CA-0068-9000
Sala, H. A. (California) show/hide docs
JC-CA-0068-0002 | JC-CA-0068-0010 | JC-CA-0068-9000
Stormer, Dan Lewis (California) show/hide docs
JC-CA-0068-0002 | JC-CA-0068-0010 | JC-CA-0068-9000
Webb, Michael Joseph (California) show/hide docs
JC-CA-0068-0002 | JC-CA-0068-0010 | JC-CA-0068-9000
Defendant's Lawyers Barmann, Bernard Charles (California) show/hide docs
JC-CA-0068-0006 | JC-CA-0068-9000
Gallagher, Holly (California) show/hide docs
JC-CA-0068-0010 | JC-CA-0068-9000
Hagar, John H. Jr. (California) show/hide docs
JC-CA-0068-0006 | JC-CA-0068-9000

- click to show/hide ALL -

new search
view search results
page permalink

- top of page -